In January 2020, my fiancé Rob Chaney and I decided to visit Texas, due to a potential job offer I received. That trip did not result in an offer, but we found our new beautiful three bedrooms, two bath place in New Braunfels while visiting. Shortly after our trip, I received an offer from another company to start in March. Unfortunately, that company closed before we moved due to a family situation before we moved, so we chose to stay in Ohio until the end of March when our lease ended.
In March, Covid-19 restrictions struck, and we suddenly found ourselves out of work with everything shut down. We moved to Texas, but we had to learn how to handle life with the lockdown instead of experiencing everything Texas has to offer.
A New Career?
I am autistic with High Functioning Autism (Aspergers), so learning that we could not go anywhere, or do anything was not easy. I decided to go back to doing Facebook live videos because I needed a hobby to keep me busy. I never thought that a hobby could turn into a possible career.
After numerous forms of positive feedback, I decided to make my videos a career. I believe that my push to become an inspirational speaker came from my loved ones who have gone before me. Not only am I working with an inspirational speaking coach to further my career in speaking, but I am also working with my fiancé on my children’s stories to get them published. I am also working on starting my full-time career as an Autism Behavioral Technician (Registered Behavioral Technician – RBT).
Let’s start with some precautions that you can take to stay safe during Covid19.
- Make sure to wash your hands for at least twenty seconds
- If your sick, stay home until you feel better
- Make sure to keep your six feet distance
- Clean and disinfect as much as possible
What are some tips for staying sain during Covid19?
- Focus on the things you can control
- Be kind to yourself; you are not alone in these struggles
- Try to maintain a routine sleep, school, meals, and work
- Make sure that you take time out of your day for activities you enjoy, such as reading a good book, watching tv, crafting, cooking, and baking
- Relax, go out in nature, and enjoy the sunshine and fresh air as it helps us relax, but remember to avoid crowds, and keep your distance
- Finding ways to exercise can relieve anxiety, stress, and manage your moods.
- Some examples:
- Exercise videos at home like yoga or meditation
- Some examples:
- Make sure that you reach out to others in need like your elderly neighbors, or people with special needs.
- Check to see if they need help with prescriptions or groceries
This rare situation has given us a unique opportunity to come together and strengthen our family bond and help our children grow!
Family time is something that is happening more during the lockdown, so what are some family activities you can do together?
Some ideas for activities you can do as a family:
- Check out pinterest for crafting, cooking, baking, and more ideas.
- YouTube has a channel for kids yoga called Cosmic Kids Yoga.
- There’s also a channel for kids meditation or mindfulness activities.
- Scholastic Kids is also a great educational resource to use.
- Family stem activities (just google STEM and you will find a lot of ideas)
- Create a sensory bottle or bag
- make your own play dough
- watch Disney plus
- play on noggin, or PBS kids for appropriate children’s games
Special Needs Families
I didn’t want to forget about the families who have kiddos with special needs during these tough times. I know that working with your kiddos during these changes can be hard.
Some tips that I have for you include:
- “Be clear, direct, and honest with your kiddos”
- Explain that “Corona virus is a germ it can make people very sick”. “We have to stay away from others to stay safe”!
- Go over some rules with your kiddos can help your kiddo understand what’s going on:
- Wash your hands thoroughly & often for 20 seconds at least
- Try not to touch your eyes, nose, or mouth
- Stay six feet away from others
- Wear a face mask in public
- Do not bring up topics that do not come up as it can induce more panic and anxiety.
- Try to keep your kiddos routine consistent but include schoolwork, breaks, and exercise.
- Make sure to ask and provide options to your kiddos like “what would you like for lunch?” , and “what school work do you want to do next?” These questions will make your kiddos feel included and important.
- Use visual schedules, and to-do lists can help your kiddos know what to expect.
- Before starting a new transition, set up a two-minute timer, and providing a two-minute verbal cue can prepare the kiddo for the transition.
- Kiddos who feel frustrated, worried, or scared, may have repetitive behaviors, tantrums, or other challenging behaviors.
Some activities that a child with special needs can do with their families include:
- Talking together
- Doing crafts
- Acting out fears
- Using their communication devices to say what they want to do so they are included
- Deep breathing
- Watching a favorite TV show
- Making sensory bags, bottles, or bins
- Kids Cosmic Yoga
- A warm bath or shower
- Coin rubbing
- Threading edible jewelry to make bracelets
- Creating a sensory collage
- Painting with ice
- Marshmallow painting
- Creating a calm down draw with tactile toys are all other sensory friendly activities you can try with your kiddos
Autism doesn’t have to define a person. Artists with autism are like anyone else: They define themselves through hard work and individuality.”
-Adrienne Bailon, Artist
Well, everyone, it’s time to wrap up my first blog on Covid-19! I hope you enjoy my inspirational blog.
Thank you for all the support, love, and encouragement.
I will see you all real soon n my next blog!